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Dionaea muscipula (Venus flytrap)
Cressler, Alan

Dionaea muscipula

Dionaea muscipula Ellis

Venus Flytrap, Meadow Clam, Tippitywichit

Droseraceae (Sundew Family)


USDA Symbol: dimu4

USDA Native Status: L48 (N)

A carnivorous plant with a cluster of white flowers atop a leafless stalk rising above a rosette of bristly, folded, basal leaves. Venus fly-traps are native only to an area within about 75-miles of Wilmington, N.C., but they have been introduced to Florida, New Jersey and other locations.

When insects or spiders disturb any two of the six tactile bristles on the upper surface of the folded leaves of this fascinating plant, the hinged halves of the leaf snap shut, trapping the prey. A chemical secreted by the prey stimulates the flow of the plant's digestive enzymes (this does not take place if the plant is stimulated by an inert object such as a pencil tip). Following digestion of the prey, the nutrients are absorbed and the leaf is reset.


From the Image Gallery

18 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Fruit Type: Capsule
Size Notes: Flower scape up to about 16 inches tall.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: White
Bloom Time: May , Jun


USA: DE , FL , NC , NJ , SC
Native Distribution: Coastal plain of North and South Carolina; also reported from New Jersey and Florida.
Native Habitat: Moist sandy areas and pinelands.

Mr. Smarty Plants says

Whether Venus flytrap (dionaea muscipula) is endangered
April 04, 2006
I am a 4th grader at Whitestone Elementary School in Leander, Texas. I am in the Quest program and I am doing a project on the venus flytrap and would like to ask you some questions. 1. Is there an ...
view the full question and answer

National Wetland Indicator Status

This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Mt. Cuba Center - Hockessin, DE

Web Reference

Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

From the Archive

Wildflower Newsletter 1996 VOL. 13, NO.2 - Annual Wildflower Days Festival, Wildflower Center Hotline, The Visitor Experien...

Additional resources

USDA: Find Dionaea muscipula in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Dionaea muscipula in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Dionaea muscipula


Record Modified: 2023-03-30
Research By: TWC Staff

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